Sunday, January 31, 2010

Teaching: Focus Points

I've been prompted to think a lot this week about my teaching, thanks to a student and friend.

All instructors tend to have a few focus points they are stuck on. I know for the last two months mine has been "Placement of reinforcer" and this last month I have added in "Presentation." This has greatly helped my training with my own dogs, as well as the training my students in all my classes/lessons. But...I need to think about all the other important things too!

Some focus points that I will need to focus on in different weeks:
Speed and latency, Shaping skills, mechanical skills, fluency, toys as reinforcer, real world applications, challenges...

On other notes, Griff and I, and a two-legged student, visited a 4H/FFA club in another county today to give a workshop. Griffin and I were the students while the 'real' students had a chance to judge. He was adorable and his heeling was beautiful! He did two whole patterns, his only errors were a stop and sniff when our 'judge' directed us over a hose and into a wall, and when we were 'left turned' right into a bucket...Griffin went on the other side and immediately resumed heel.

Some of the things the students learned in this three hour lesson today:
-Proper obedience handling for heeling: via tag-teach
-Clicker introduction and mechanical skills
-Targeting: taught by my assistant for the day
-Go-around an object
-Call fronts

Time goes fast and I really could teach more long lessons. The time went fast and I can't wait for my next time with this group!

This is going to be a great week with agility class starting at PosiDog!

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